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  • One Smurfy Day


    The smurfs lived in almost sickening harmony with every creature they ever came into contact with. This one carried baskets of berries from the woods to storage, while this one carried out minor repairs on his neighbor's toadstool house, as another one moved furniture for a pretty blonde Smurfette. Somehow, in this community of nearly one hundred, every individual stayed busy and every stomach stayed full.

    From a bird's eye view, one smurf stood out. He could be seen walking among the village, making sure this task was done and that foolishness wasn't. He was older, wiser, more experienced than the rest. He wore his crimson hat and pants proudly, as a badge of honor and symbol of his authority and position within the community. He was at the top, of course, and this kind, benevolent leader was affectionately referred to as "Papa Smurf". He was so old that none of the smurfs now living (all nearly half his age) had never known him by any other name. Old, yet somehow more full of youth and life than any of them. Many smurfs closest to him knew that he had been through much. Terrible sufferings, of which they could not imagine, and he would not speak. Each was happiest this way. In fact, the only thing that ever caused any smurf not to be happy was the occasional attack by a large* orange monster. It had many teeth, long claws, and mercilessly chased the smurfs through fields, up trees, wherever he would run across them. Thank Smurf that no smurf had ever led him back to the village.

    *in this story, words indicating great size, 'large' in this case, may be misleading. To the smurfs, who are only three apples high, a great many things may seem large.


    At some time near that same time, across the great Big Water that no smurf had ever crossed, an old man sat alone in front of his fireplace ,which burned the sickliest of twigs and shrubs, for that was all that lived around his house, and even if the dried up sandy soil had been able to support what he would consider a 'tree' (for Gargamel would consider anything thicker than his wrist a 'tree'), he would have been too frail to gather it.

    He was a bitter old fellow, with no family, friends, or even acquaintances to speak of. The closest thing he had to a 'friend' was an orange cat that came around every night or so. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say this cat shared his home. Gargamel did not feed the cat, it found its own meals who knows where. It simply used the beaten down hut to keep out of the weather and possibly for the protection this human provided, if any. And Gargamel was content to let it stay, as, although there are probably some who would disagree, its companionship was better than none.

    He was flipping through an old book, thick, dusty, with pages yellowed with age and some missing. Half reading and half looking at the pictures as he noticed his flame begin to die. This was a constant annoyance to the beggar as the twigs burned hotly, but quickly, and needed constant refueling in order to heat his gruel to the desired degree of lukewarmness. He grumpily got up from his seat, holding his back, which buckled more and more with each passing year as his hunch grew ever larger.

    He set the book open on his table, and went over to the small woodpile he had thrown in the corner earlier in the week. A draught blew in through a high open window. He felt the warm summer breeze glide over his smooth scalp, and immediately began to grumble to himself. He looked over at his book, and saw what he had feared. It had taken him an untold amount of time to get to that spot, and now he watched helplessly as the pages flapped back and forth in the wind. He hobbled over, as quickly as he could, and slammed his hand down on the flapping pages. Moving his hand down he uncovered what looked like part of a recipe. "Childrens' books.." he mumbled to himself as he saw on the opposite page a pencil sketch of a cute little fantastic creature. It looked like a human...only...not. It had large eyes, ears, and feet. A pot belly...and a little nub of a tail. "What nonsense", the old man told himself. He didn't give the children's cook book another thought before he dozed off in his chair, dreaming of missed opportunities....

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